Diabetes rates in the U.S. are on the rise, according to the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation. Although obesity is a key factor in the increase, it's certainly not the only reason for higher diabetes rates. In fact, untreated sleep apnea could also increase your risk of type 2 diabetes. Fortunately, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America in Arlington, TX, offers treatments that can help you avoid diabetes if you're diagnosed with sleep apnea or better manage your condition if you already have diabetes.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea occurs when you stop breathing while you're sleeping. Breathing pauses can last several seconds and may happen hundreds of times throughout the night. These breathing pauses deprive your brain of oxygen, which can lead to a variety of health consequences, including heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, and depression.
The condition can occur if you have excess tissue in your airway, your tongue blocks your throat while you sleep, or your brain doesn't properly control breathing while you sleep.
Symptoms of sleep apnea can include:
- Gasping or jerking awake when you stop breathing
- Daytime fatigue
- Dry mouth or sore throat when you wake up
- Trouble concentrating
How is type 2 diabetes-related to sleep apnea?
Diabetes occurs when your blood sugar level is too high. Sleep apnea may change the way your body uses glucose (sugar) and could cause insulin resistance, a condition that occurs when your body's cells don't respond normally to insulin. Insulin, a hormone made by your pancreas, controls the amount of glucose in your blood.
Insulin sensitivity, glucose control, and nighttime glucose levels improve when sleep apnea is treated, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
What can be done to treat sleep apnea?
Depending on the severity of your condition, losing weight may be enough to eliminate your sleep apnea symptoms. During your visit to the Arlington sleep clinic, your doctor might give you an oral appliance that may help reduce your symptoms. The appliance holds your jaw forward and prevents your tongue from blocking your throat while you sleep.
A continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine is another option. CPAP machines deliver a steady stream of air into your mouth through a small mask. The stream of air prevents your airway from closing and prevents sleep apnea.
Do you think you may have sleep apnea? Call your Arlington, TX, cardiologist and sleep doctor, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America at (817) 419-7220 to schedule your appointment.
Would you like to reduce your risk of heart disease? Making a few lifestyle changes and visiting your Arlington, TX, cardiologist, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America can help you improve your heart health.
5 ways you can protect your heart
These steps will help you keep your heart healthy and lower the likelihood that you'll develop heart disease or experience a heart attack:
- Improve Your Diet: Eliminate or limit foods high in saturated or trans fats, like bacon, red meat, pork, hot dogs, cheese, poultry with the skin on, butter, cookies and other treats, fast food, crackers, and chips. These fats can increase your bad cholesterol level while lowering your good cholesterol level and may also raise your diabetes risk. Switch to foods made with healthier fats, like olive or canola oil, and increase the amount of lean meat, poultry, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables you eat.
- Make Exercise Part of Your Routine: Exercise reduces your blood pressure, lowers stress, improves circulation, strengthens your heart, and reduces your risk of heart attack, heart disease, coronary artery disease, and high cholesterol. Adults need 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity, plus muscle-strengthening activities two or more days per week, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Lose Weight: Excess weight stresses your heart, increasing your risk of heart failure, heart attack, and stroke. Dropping extra pounds can help you protect your heart and lower your blood pressure and cholesterol.
- Reduce Your Stress Level: It may be impossible to eliminate stress from your life, but you can take steps to keep it under control. Making time for hobbies and activities you enjoy can help you reduce stress, as can exercise and stress-relief practices, like yoga and meditation.
- See Your Cardiologist: A visit to your Arlington heart doctor is a good idea if you're concerned about your heart health or already have a condition that affects your heart. Regular medical care can help you lower your risk of developing heart disease or other related conditions.
Make your heart health a priority! Call your cardiologist in Arlington, TX, Dr. Atif Sohail of Heart & Sleep Clinics of America, at (817) 419-7220 to schedule your appointment.
Heart Disease is a deadly serious condition. Not only should everyone get tests for heart disease regularly, but everyone also deserves to be informed about the kinds of tests that are available. Heart disease the leading cause of death in both men and women in America. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is responsible for about 25% of the deaths in the United States each year. Get your heart tested with Dr. Atif Sohail at Heart & Sleep Clinics of America in Arlington, TX.
What to Expect from Heart Disease Tests
Before you take various heart tests your doctor may ask questions about your personal and family medical history, including known history of heart disease or if you smoke. Usually, you will take a type of electrocardiogram which measures your heart's electric pulses. Your doctor may also measure your lipid profile which can tell you your cholesterol levels. All of this and more helps determine future plans for further testing and solutions to maintain a healthy heart.
Types of Heart Disease Tests
A measurement of your total cholesterol level including low-density lipoprotein, high-density lipoprotein, and triglycerides. Managing a healthy cholesterol level prevents heart disease.
Also known as an EKG, an electrocardiogram measures the electrical activity in your heart. Your doctor looks for specific patterns on the EKG to search for abnormalities such as an abnormal rhythm, or a heart attack.
Stress tests are used to measure how the heart performs under physical stress. The patient will raise their heart rate with exercise on a treadmill and an EKG or similar device measure the heart activity.
An event recorder is a portable monitor that measures heart activity for several weeks. This type of recorder is used for patients with infrequent symptoms.
Other types of Heart Disease Tests Include:
- Nuclear cardiac stress test
- Blood Pressure Monitoring
To find out more information on heart disease and heart disease testing, call your Arlington, TX, Heart & Sleep Clinics of America at (817) 419-7220. Dr. Sohail will walk with you through every heart disease test to ensure your heart is always safe and healthy.
Sleep apnea requires treatment to prevent serious health problems.
While sleep apnea prevents millions of Americans from getting the quality of sleep they deserve, it’s also surprisingly underdiagnosed. If you or your bed partner is a chronically loud snorer or gasps for air in the middle of the night our Arlington, TX, board-certified cardiologist Dr. Atif Sohail and the team at Heart & Sleep Clinics of America can help get this sleep disorder under control.
Does sleep apnea need to be treated?
Even if you are dealing with mild symptoms it’s still important that you visit our Arlington, TX, cardiology team if you are experiencing symptoms of sleep apnea. This is because this condition can increase the risk for some serious health problems and complications including,
- Heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
What are the signs and symptoms of sleep apnea?
You could be dealing with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) if you experience,
- Restless sleep
- Extreme daytime fatigue despite getting enough sleep
- Morning headaches
- Brain fog
- Trouble concentrating
- Poor memory
- Mood swings
- Gasping for air in the middle of the night
- Chronic, loud snoring
It’s important to undergo a proper sleep study to determine whether your symptoms are the result of sleep apnea or if there is another sleep disorder at play.
How is sleep apnea treated?
The standard course of treatment for OSA is a treatment known as continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, in which a face mask is worn over the nose and mouth to deliver pressurized air to prevent the airways from collapsing while you are asleep. Along with using CPAP therapy every night, our cardiologist may recommend lifestyle changes including,
- Losing excess weight
- Avoiding alcohol and sedatives
- Quit smoking
- Sleeping on your side (avoid sleeping on your stomach or back)
If you are dealing with milder symptoms, then your doctor may recommend a simple custom oral appliance rather than CPAP therapy. This treatment option may also be recommended to patients who aren’t ideal candidates for CPAP treatment.
If you are experiencing symptoms of sleep apnea it’s important to talk to a qualified specialist. Call Heart & Sleep Clinics of America in Arlington, TX, at (817) 419-7220 to schedule an evaluation with our cardiologist.
What is the likelihood that you could develop heart disease during your lifetime?
Heart disease refers to a variety of conditions that affect the health and function of your heart including high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack and arrhythmias. 1 in every 3 deaths in the US each year are due to heart disease. Wondering what your risk is for heart disease? From the office of our Arlington, TX, board-certified cardiologist, Dr. Atif Sohail, here’s what you should know about heart disease and how to reduce your risk,
There are risk factors you can change and some you can’t
It’s important to recognize that there are a variety of risk factors that play in role in whether or not you develop heart disease. Risk factors for heart disease that cannot be changed include,
- Being male
- Being 65 years or older
- A family history of heart disease
There are also risk factors for heart disease that you do have control over. Those include,
- Smoking or using tobacco products
- Drinking alcohol
- High cholesterol
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Being obese
You can make changes now to reduce your chances for heart disease
There are ways to reduce your risk for heart disease. These include,
- Getting your blood pressure and cholesterol under control (if you have hypertension or high cholesterol) through healthy living and medication
- Eating a healthy diet that is low in saturated and trans fats, as well as cholesterol and sodium
- Quitting smoking and tobacco products
- Limiting or avoiding alcoholic beverages
- Adding at least 30 minutes (minimum) of aerobic exercise into your routine at least five days a week
- Losing excess weight through regular physical activity and a healthy, balanced diet
If you have a family history of heart disease, we know you can’t change this hereditary risk factor; however, you can be proactive and visit our Arlington, TX, cardiologist for routine checkups at least once a year. We can monitor blood pressure, cholesterol and the health and function of your heart.
We can also provide customized lifestyle recommendations and changes you can make to improve your heart health and to reduce your risk. By coming in once a year we can also catch heart disease early and provide you with more conservative treatment options to manage your condition.
If you would like to sit down with our Arlington, TX, cardiologist to talk about the many ways to improve your lifestyle to bolster your heart health, then call Heart & Sleep Clinics of America at (817) 419-7220.
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